It is hard to win when you don’t do anything particularly well. Kevin Hart started and took the loss after allowing five runs in six innings. Phil Dumatrait and Steven Jackson each allowed a run in their inning of relief.
The offense scored three runs, all of which came in the 5th inning. The Pirates briefly held a lead that the pitching staff and the defense couldn’t hold onto. Delwyn Young committed an error to start the bottom of the fifth and that lead off hitter – Felipe Lopez – eventually scored on a double play ground ball. A goofed double play helped Milwaukee score a pair in the third. With one out and runners on the corners, Steve Pearce fielded a ground ball and tossed to Brian Bixler covering second. Bixler fell coming across the bag and was unable to complete the twin killing. That allowed one run to score and three batters later, Hart walked Prince Fielder with the bases loaded to force in another run.
Andy LaRoche hit a two run homer for the highlight of the Pirates offense.
Yovani Gallardo started but was ineffective. He gave up three runs in five innings. He struck out seven. Claudio Vargas was the winner in relief.
Lastings Milledge had two hits.
Offense. Defense. Pitching. Attitude? see below
Bixler struck out three times.
Ryan Doumit did not play after being pulled from yesterday’s game for undisclosed reasons. Skipper John Russell declined to give details, but confirmed that Doumit is not injured. Attitude issues?
This was LaRoche’s third homer of the month – tops in 2009 for him.
Gallardo had split two decisions against Pittsburgh in 2009. This was his fourth start against the Pirates this year.
Hart beat the Beer Makers earlier in the month in Pittsburgh.